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Thread: To Gym or not to Gym

  1. #1
    Age before beauty......MOVE!!!!
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    To Gym or not to Gym

    I am 56 years old, of a reasonable weight but un-fit. I notice this most when I go skiing. I'd like to get fitter particularly with aerobic fittness. I have no desire to build muscle bulk.

    I live in a rural location with no street lights and narrow lanes. Running and cycling would be dangerous in the dark. So what options do I have? Train at home perhaps with the aid of a cross trainer or rowing machine or go to a Gym.

    Until yesterday I had never set foot in a Gym. I have always found the whole idea unattractive. But I thought I'd go and ask.

    Well, I got the high pressure sales treatment which immediately turns me off. I just wish these people would treat you like an adult! Anyway, some surprises for me:-

    1) £39 a month!!!! even with the "special offers only for this week".
    2) Minimum 12 month contract . I have had shorter marriages! What if I dont take to it or it doesnt fit in with my life?
    3) I could have a special starter package for £40 (£5 off) which would give me £20 of supplements (whatever they are) and "nutritional advice". By the looks of many people at the Gym, I could give them nutritional advice!
    4) Classes of 15. How can you get any sort of help in a class of 15?
    5) All classes mixed ability. So what is the point of a mixed ability spinning class?
    6) Nothing to cater for older customers.
    7) The whole place had the atmosphere of a Tube Train.

    So am probably going to decline Jason's special offers. I guess what I am looking for does not exist? Any suggestions or advice gratefully received.
    The Man with the Silver Spot

  2. #2
    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Check your nearest town/church hall for aerobics classes. Otherwise home aerobics videos (cliched as they are) might be the right thing.

    Also look for your nearest swimming pool.

  3. #3
    jim
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    HEXUS.clueless jim's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Personally, I would steer clear of any gym that didn't offer rolling contracts, even if they cost a bit more. No way I would sign up for 12 months without being absolutely certain.

    Many will also offer 1-2 week free passes to let you decide whether you like it or not.

    It may work for you, it may not, but I think until you've done 1-4 weeks it's very hard to know. I went to one that looked great on the tour, and was woeful when I actually joined - present one looked crap on the tour, but is actually really enjoyable.

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    This is the time for gyms to make their money because they know the majority will have given up by March.

    I would start at home and try and get some consistency going. How much are exercise bikes these days?

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    Evil Monkey! MrJim's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Personally I would think it's worth a phone call to your GP to ask for some advice regarding the kind of exercise you could be doing, as he or she should take any medical background into consideration. Even a call to NHS direct might be worthwhile if you don't want to bother your GP.

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    unapologetic apologist fuddam's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Don't gym. Find a friend who likes running/biking and either wants to join you, or is already doing it. Running/biking in the dark is FUN, not dangerous, especially if you go off-road. Can grab a cheap but awesomely powerful headtorch off ebay for £15 which will throw out in excess of 900 lumens, and that's all you need.

    FWIW, I help run a group that does adventure racing, and we're all the wrong side of 40, with some peeps in their 50's. Men and women. We train in all weathers, all seasons, because it's a blast, plus the community/camaraderie is superb. We train on MOD land mostly, out in the wilds of Surrey.

    One can never stop saying Thank You

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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    There are lots of low-cost, no-contract gyms popping up. I was a member of http://www.thegymgroup.com/ for a short period of time, and it was very good, as long as you don't like to use a pool, steam room, sauna, jacuzzi etc. There are others with the same model so see if there's one near you (google "low cost gym").

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    Kaplah! OilSheikh's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Ignore the BIG gyms like Virgin, Nuffield, Fitness first, LA.
    They charge too much.

    I go to my local one, which has been built recently and it is well maintained as well. I pay £6.50 everytime I use the gym. Did have to do a pay an induction fee of £25... £10 was for a special key

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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    I'll add a second vote for swimming, it's a good all over cardio vascular work out and avoids the traffic hazards, at least while you're in the pool.

  10. #10
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    If running is your bag, get yourself a running cap and a set of Blackburn fleas. They are really bright and pretty lightweight so you'll be safe on the roads.

    Cycling is also possible as fuddam says, but you need REALLY bright lights.

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    Kaplah! OilSheikh's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    You may also want to try walking fast. In a recetn video I saw, Sonic the Hedgehof burns a lot of cals because he runs faster than speed of sound!

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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    I'd start at home at first and see how you go, although i'd avoid a Rowing Machine for now, they can be difficult to master and if you use them without the correct form you could do your back in.

    Cross Trainers are good and easy on the Joints.

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    HEXUS.Metal Knoxville's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    The gym I used to work for offered more "personal" training experience than most of the bigger franchises but frankly I wouldn't pay those prices to excercise (the cheapest package was £59 a month on a twelve month contract) and neither should anyone else!

    Most of my training's been done at home, weights, heavy bag work, fast rope... Lots of walking too which'd be perfect if you live in a rural area but I know chasing daylight at this time of year can be a pain, I'm in a similar position except my route would involve ten miles down an unlit canal instead of dodging traffic

    What I couldn't do at home I found a small independent gym for, weekly fee, no contracts, no fuss, some of them look like dungeons when you drive past but they're the ones you want by the sound of it, a brand spanking new touchscreen controlled excercise bike doesn't work up any more of a sweat than one that's ten years old.

    I'd start at your local leisure centre/swimming bath while you try and find somewhere that suits you to be honest. Zak's a firmer endorser of swimming than me but it's so much easier on the joints than a rowing machine. It depends what you've got nearby obviously but the two that are local to me both offer aerobics, self defence and a myriad of other classes most nights too so there might be something that tickles your fancy in that regard and the memberships are usually cheaper than big chain gyms.

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    Sexiest Hexus user? quite possibly Russ's Avatar
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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    Maybe take a look at home workouts, p90x can be done with no equipment apart from resistance bands and insanity doesn't require anything (although a will to tortute oneself is useful)

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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    can't you try one of those budget gyms ? its not bad for the price.

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    Re: To Gym or not to Gym

    In your case I wound not bother with the gym as you will achieve just as much at home . For the winter months see if you can pick up an exercise bike and train and in ten minute sessions . Also swimming is a great method for getting fit. If you don't have a 'stairs' in your house make a 'stepping box' . If your not that fit start of gradually so as not to give yourself a 'heart attack' . In my village I have a 'state of the art gym' but have refrained from using it up till now. Think my one is about £170 a year (for O.A.P's that is) plus a £15 initial instruction fee.

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